Watchdog Report Gives WA State a “D” for It’s Govt. Financial Condition
Truth in Accounting (TIA) is a watchdog group who track, report and monitor the financial performance and actions of all 50 state governments.
Founded in 2002, it's basically a group of high-level accountants, analysts, financial experts, and media workers. Some of the highest level and smartest minds work there.
In their 2021 report, they've given Washington state a "D" grade, ranking us 28th worst out of 50 states.
In a nutshell, TIA says our financial condition worsened despite Federal funds (during COVID).
The TIA report also said:
"Washington’s elected officials have repeatedly made financial decisions that left the state with a debt burden of $21.6 billion. That burden came to $7,800 for every state taxpayer. Washington’s financial problems stem mostly from unfunded retirement obligations that accumulated over the years. The state had only set aside 74 cents for every dollar of promised pension benefits and has set aside no money for promised retiree health care benefits."---from TIA report.
COVID added to the issues, as the TIA explained further:
"Washington did not have enough money set aside to weather the pandemic and the state has been in poor fiscal shape for years. Like all other states, Washington received federal assistance from the CARES Act and other COVID-19 related grants which came with stipulations on how the money could be spent. The state has not been properly funding its pension and retiree health care promises for years which has led to its financial condition continuing to deteriorate."
This last statement is in obvious reference to the Legislature 'raiding' the rainy day fund after the onset of COVID. The state did have at least a billion set aside as an emergency contingent, but it was used by the legislature for spending on programs. The Tacoma News Tribune and other sources reported this in early 2021.
Surprisingly, Oregon came in at #10 (tenth best) and Idaho at #8.
To look over the entire TIA report, click on the button below.
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